Harmony Gold recovers body of final missing miner

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Harmony Gold has recovered the body of the only miner who was still unaccounted for following Tuesday’s seismic event at Doornkop mine.

[DATA HAR:Harmony Gold Mining Company Limited] advises that rescue workers have recovered the body of the mineworker on Friday evening, who was unaccounted for following Tuesday evening’s underground seismic event, rock fall and fire at the company’s Doornkop mine. This brings to nine the number of mineworkers who died, and all are now accounted for,” the company said.

The eight mineworkers who had made their way to a refuge bay on 192 level were brought safely to surface by rescue workers Wednesday morning.

On Thursday, it had located the bodies of eight employees who were unaccounted for following the mine fire.

Harmony Gold’s chief executive, Graham Briggs, extended his personal condolences and those of the company’s board of directors and management to the family, friends and colleagues of those who died, as well as praised the efforts of the rescue workers who volunteered their services.

“Families have been brought to the mine by the company, where they will be provided with the support they need at this time,” he said.

“The rescue teams’ common spirit of selflessness, courage and camaraderie has been an inspiration to us all at this sad time. We are deeply grateful to all involved in the rescue mission – the rescue teams, management, the unions and the Department of Mineral Resources.”

Briggs added that the priority would now be an intensive investigation into the cause of the Doornkop mine fire, which would involve representatives of the company, organised labour and the health and safety directorate of the Department of Mineral Resources.